SNP MSP calls on UK Government to match EU 5G and public wifi rollout commitments

Written by Jenni Davidson on 22 September 2016 in News

SNP MSP Joan McAlpine has written to Matt Hancock to asks for confirmation the UK Government will match EU connectivity commitments

Joan McAlpine MSP - Image credit: Scottish Parliament

SNP MSP Joan McAlpine has called on the UK Government to match the EU’s commitment to roll out 5G by 2025 and free public wifi by 2020.

The convener of the Scottish Parliament’s European and External Affairs Committee has written to Matt Hancock, the Minister of State for Digital and Culture, to ask whether the UK Government will be able to match the commitment outside of the EU.

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, has promised to “fully deploy” 5G across the EU by 2025 and to equip every European village and city with free wireless internet around the main centres of public life by 2020.


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McAlpine said: “Connectivity is essential to the future of our economy, and the EU’s ambition to roll out the next generation of mobile internet is a transformative change which Scotland can’t afford to miss out on. 

“This is a prime example of the real, practical benefits of EU membership – and the UK Government must outline whether they’re able to match these commitments outside of the EU.

“Rural areas in particular are often failed by market provision and deserve better than a UK government crossing their fingers and hoping for the best.

“If the Tories fail to match this upgrade then Brexit Britain will increasingly look like last year’s model.”

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